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Patrick Mahomes passed for the second-most yards of his career as the Chiefs beat the Bucs 27-24 Sunday at Raymond James Stadium.
Mahomes completed 37 of 49 passes for 462 yards and three touchdowns. He was just 16 yards shy of his career high of 478 passing yards, set in a 2018 loss to the Rams.
Mahomes’ 359 passing yards at halftime were the most in a first half since Peyton Manning in 2004.
Tyreek Hill caught 13 passes for 269 yards, including touchdown catches of 75, 44 and 20 yards.
The Bucs dropped their second straight game to fall to 7-5. They would be the No. 6 seed in the NFC if the playoffs if the season ended today.
The Chiefs improved to 10-1 and remain second to the unbeaten Steelers in the AFC.
The Bucs trailed by 17 points early in the fourth quarter before rallying on two Tom Brady touchdown passes to Mike Evans.
Evans’ seven-yard touchdown reception with 4:10 remaining narrowed Tampa Bay’s deficit to 27-24. He caught a 31-yard scoring pass earlier in the quarter.
But the Chiefs were able to run out the clock on their final possession, Mahomes finding Hill for eight yards and a first down on third and seven with just over a minute remaining.
After being held to 117 passing yards in the first half, Brady finished with 345, going 27-for-41 with three touchdowns. He was intercepted twice.
Rob Gronkowski caught six passes for 106 yards. Chris Godwin had eight receptions for 97 yards.
Ronald Jones took a short Brady pass 37 yards for a touchdown in the first half. Shaquil Barrett set up the score by forcing a Mahomes fumble that was recovered by Will Gholston.
Here’s how it happened:
Bucs pull within a field goal
After trailing by as many as 17 points early in the fourth quarter, the Bucs got back to within a field goal on Mike Evans’ second touchdown with just over four minutes remaining in the game.
After a short 23-yard punt Tommy Townsend gave Tampa Bay possession at its 27, the Bucs drove 73 yards to pull to within 27-24 on Tom Brady’s seven-yard pass to a wide-open Evans near the left pylon.
The Bucs were aided by two roughing-the-passer penalties called against Kansas City’s Frank Clark on the drive.
Evans had a 31-yard touchdown reception earlier in the quarter to make the score 27-17.
Bucs close to within 10
Mike Evans’ 31-yard touchdown reception early in the fourth quarter trims the Bucs’ deficit to the Chiefs to 10 points.
On fourth and three from the Kansas City 31, Tom Brady lofted a pass over the head of Charvarius Ward down the right sideline into Evans’ outstretched hands to make the score 27-17 with 12:44 to play.
It was just Evans’ second reception of the game. He caught a 12-yard pass earlier in the game.
More good news, bad news
Running back Ronald Jones gives the Bucs a spark with a 34-yard run to the Chiefs 25 late in the third quarter.
But a Tom Brady pass two plays later is deflected high in the air and intercepted by Tyrann Mathieu.
Good news, bad news
Quarterback Tom Brady elicited oohs and aahs from both sidelines during a third-quarter drive.
One play after throwing a perfect strike to Chris Godwin for a 44-yard gain to the Chiefs 36, Brady was intercepted by Bashaud Breeland.
Kansas City, leading by 17, took over at its 11 with just over four minutes remaining in the quarter.
Hill’s third TD catch puts Chiefs up 17
Tyreek Hill’s third touchdown gives the Chiefs a 27-10 lead with seven minutes remaining in the third quarter.
As with his first two touchdown receptions, Hill beat Bucs cornerback Carlton Davis on the 20-yard scoring play.
The touchdown capped an eight-play, 75-yard drive. Mahomes connected with Hill earlier in the drive for 21 yards to the Chiefs 48.
Hill now has 261 yards on 12 catches for the game. Mahomes has passed for 412 yards.
A Jordan Whitehead interception during the drive was nullified by an offsides penalty against defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh.
Bucs get back within 10
Ryan Succop’s 26-yard field goal less than four minutes into the second half cuts the Bucs’ deficit to the Chiefs to 20-10.
A 48-yard pass from Tom Brady to Rob Gronkowski set up Tampa Bay at the Kansas City 5.
After a Leonard Fournette one-yard run, a pass from Brady to Fournette lost four yards and Brady threw incomplete, the Bucs were forced to settle for the field goal with 11:04 to play in the third quarter.
Chiefs lead 20-7 at halftime
Patrick Mahomes has thrown for more than 350 yards, and Tyreek Hill has more than 200 receiving yards and two touchdowns as the Chiefs lead the Bucs 20-7 at halftime at Raymond James Stadium.
Hill has eight catches for 210 yards, including touchdown catches of 75 and 44 yards, most of them in the first quarter.
Mahomes has completed 25 of 33 passes for 359 yards and two touchdowns. His passing yards are the most in a first half since Peyton Manning in 2004.
Kicker Harrison Butker has converted field goals of 19 and 29 yards.
The Bucs’ lone score came on Ronald Jones’ 37-yard touchdown reception late in the second quarter.
Linebacker Shaquil Barrett forced a Mahomes fumble that Will Gholston recovered at the Tampa Bay 12-yard line. Instead of possibly falling behind 24-0, the Bucs drove 88 yards in seven plays to trim their deficit to 17-7.
Bucs quarterback Tom Brady is 10 of 16 for 117 yards. Tight end Rob Gronkowski has four catches for 50 yards, including a 29-yard reception to set up Jones’ score.
Takeaway leads to first Bucs score
The Bucs got their first break of the game when linebacker Shaquil Barrett forced a Patrick Mahomes fumble that Will Gholston recovered at the Tampa Bay 12 with 8:38 to play in the first half.
The Chiefs, already leading by 17, drove from their 42-yard line to the Bucs 8 before turning the ball over.
After picking up three first downs, a 29-yard pass from Tom Brady to Rob Gronkowski down the middle of the field moved the ball from the Bucs 34 to the Chiefs 37.
One play later, Ronald Jones took a short pass from Brady 37 yards for a touchdown down the left sideline, cutting the Bucs’ deficit to 17-7 with 4:29 remaining in the half.
Tyreek Hill’s 200-yard first quarter
What was more spectacular? Tyreek Hill’s 44-yard catch-and-run that put the Chiefs ahead of the Bucs 17-0 late in the first quarter?
Or Hill’s backflip into the end zone to complete the play?
With Kansas City facing third-and-eight from the Tampa Bay 44 following a false start penalty against running back Le’Veon Bell, quarterback Patrick Mahomes sidearmed a throw off his back foot, hitting Hill in stride.
The wide receiver, who had beaten cornerback Carlton Davis on the play, did the rest, juking safety Mike Edwards before flipping backward from just outside the goal line into the end zone.
Hill had 203 receiving yards and two touchdowns on seven catches with 1:32 still to play in the first quarter.
One-play scoring drive
The Chiefs needed just one play to drive 75 yards on their third possession, going ahead 10-0 on a Patrick Mahomes bomb to wide receiver Tyreek Hill.
Hill beat Bucs cornerback Carlton Davis one-on-one down the right sideline, and safety Antoine Winfield Jr. was late getting over to provide support with just under seven minutes remaining in the first quarter.
The speedy Hill already has 133 receiving yards and a touchdown on four catches.
Chiefs go ahead on early field goal
The Chiefs jumped out to a 3-0 lead over the Bucs on a 19-yard field goal from Harrison Butker less than three minutes into Sunday’s game at Raymond James Stadium.
The field goal capped a seven-play, 74-yard drive on Kansas City’s opening possession.
The big play was a 34-yard pass from Patrick Mahomes to Tyreek Hill down the left sideline to the Bucs 41.
Tampa Bay helped Kansas City with back-to-back neutral zone infractions called against Ndamukong Suh and Shaquil Barrett.
A 23-yard pass from Mahomes to Hill over cornerback Carlton Davis moved the ball to the Bucs 7. The Chiefs got to the 1 on a six-yard completion over the middle to Sammy Watkins.
But tight end Travis Kelce and Mahomes threw incomplete, and Kansas City was forced to settle for Butker’s field goal with 12:14 to play in the first quarter.
The GOAT vs. the future GOAT
We’ve been down this road a few times already this season.
Tom Brady vs. Drew Brees.
Brady vs. Aaron Rodgers.
Brady-Brees, Part 2.
Battles between elite quarterbacks with Super Bowl victories and aspirations for more.
But Brady vs. Patrick Mahomes is different.
It’s the GOAT vs. the future GOAT. The quarterback with the most championship rings against the reigning Super Bowl MVP. And a possible prequel to a rematch in Super Bowl 55 in February in Tampa.
Brady won two of the first three meetings between the two — all with the Patriots — including a 37-31 overtime victory in the AFC Championship Game following the 2018 season.
Can he get the better of his protege again this afternoon at Raymond James Stadium?
Brady is a year older (43) and surrounded by new teammates. And he and the Bucs have had mixed results against elite quarterbacks this season, blowing out Rodgers’ Packers but being swept by Brees and the Saints.
Plus, the defenses and special teams units will have a lot to say about the outcome, as well.
Win, and the Bucs (7-4) can stay within shouting distance of the NFC South-leading Saints (8-2). Lose, and they’ll drop to near the bottom of the NFC playoff field with four games to go.
The Chiefs (9-1), meanwhile, have a three-game lead over the second-place Raiders (6-4) in the AFC West and are competing with the Steelers (10-0) for the conference’s lone first-round bye.
So, will it be the GOAT, or the future GOAT?
Follow along this afternoon, starting at 4:25, as Brady and the Bucs look to resume their pursuit of the Lombardi Trophy following Monday night’s loss to the Rams.
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A little light reading
Here’s some of our content leading up to today’s game: